L.B. Foster Company reported its first quarter 2017 operating results, with sales of $118.7 million, a decrease of 6 percent compared to the first quarter of 2016. Compared fourth quarter 2016, sales increased 11.4 percent. Rail segment sales in the quarter were down by 12.2 percent driven by the domestic track components businesses, which reported a combined sales reduction of $9.1 million in the first quarter.
Net loss for the 2017 first quarter was $2.4 million, or $0.23 per diluted share, compared to a net loss of $2.8 million, or $0.28 per diluted share, last year. First quarter bookings were $162.7 million, a 38 percent increase from the prior year quarter.
“The quarter exceeded our expectations as all three reporting segments experienced significant improvement in demand,” said Bob Bauer, L.B. Foster president and CEO. “Specifically, we were encouraged by the fact that all three segments experienced double digit growth in bookings and backlog. At March 31, our backlog was $195 million after increasing sequentially over the past three quarters.”
“We continue to see positive signs in both the energy and transportation infrastructure markets we serve, however, we will remain disciplined on cost controls. As we anticipate positive year over year sales in future quarters, we expect to see improved operating leverage,” concluded Bauer.